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Weekend Adventure: A Family-Friendly Escape to Scioto County, Ohio

Get ready for a weekend that promises unforgettable family moments in Scioto County, Ohio. From interactive museums to outdoor explorations, tasty dining experiences to camping under the stars, this guide will help you create cherished memories that will be talked about for years to come.

*Do you have tweens/teens in your group? Scroll down for suggestions on activities for older kids!

Day 1: Friday

Afternoon Arrival:

Arrive in Scioto County on Friday afternoon and head to Candyland Children's Museum in Portsmouth for an immersive adventure that sparks your children's imaginations. From interactive exhibits to hands-on activities, this whimsical museum offers a world of fun and learning. Let your little ones explore their creativity, try their hands at pretend play, and embark on an educational journey that delights kids and parents alike.

Early Dinner:

After working out their wiggles at the children's museum, walk to Patties and Pints in Portsmouth for an early dinner. This family-friendly eatery offers a diverse menu that caters to both grown-up palates and kid-friendly cravings, setting the tone for a fantastic weekend.

Evening Camp Setup:

After your meal, head to Shawnee State Park Turkey Creek Campground and set up your campsite amidst the natural beauty of the park. Unwind by the campfire, share stories, and enjoy the tranquil ambiance of the outdoors.

Day 2: Saturday

Breakfast: For a hearty breakfast, head to the The Smokehouse Restaurant at Shawnee State Lodge. Enjoy a warm morning meal with a view, setting the tone for an adventurous day ahead.

Activity 1: Hiking and Nature Play

Explore the great outdoors with a hike around Turkey Creek Lake. The tranquil trails offer picturesque views and opportunities to spot local wildlife. Let the kids run wild at the natural playground, fostering a deep connection with nature.

Lunch: Playful Dining at Buckeye Dairy Bar

Recharge your energy with a scrumptious lunch at Buckeye Dairy Bar in Friendship. Beyond their delicious menu, this family-friendly spot offers an added bonus—a miniature golf course! Enjoy a leisurely meal while the kids enjoy some outdoor fun, putting their skills to the test on the charming course.

Afternoon: Splashing and Playground Adventure

Cool off at the Ohio River Campground Splash Pad in Portsmouth. This water wonderland is the perfect place for your kids to splash, play, and beat the summer heat. After some aquatic adventures, head to the adjacent playground, where climbing, swinging, and sliding await to keep the fun going.

If the weather isn't great...replace the splash pad & playground with some creative fun

Let the kids' creativity run wild (and yours too!) at The Happy Pot ceramic painting studio, where your family can personalize ceramic pieces to take home as keepsakes.

Dinner: Campfire Cuisine

If you're not already in town, head on in and stop by Kroger to pick up campfire-friendly food for a hearty dinner back at your campsite. From marshmallow roasting to storytelling around the campfire, the evening promises to be filled with warmth and laughter.

Day 3: Sunday

Morning: Departure and Reflection

Pack up your campsite and bid farewell to Shawnee State Park, cherishing the memories you've made. As you journey home, take time to reflect on the wonderful experiences you shared as a family.

Breakfast: Fueling Up for the Return Home

Before you leave town stop by Lofts Coffee Company in Portsmouth, where a warm cup of coffee for you and a kid-friendly beverage for the little ones await. Indulge in hearty breakfast options that cater to every palate, setting the stage for smooth trip home. Make sure to grab a few bags of their house roasted coffee to take home!

Pro Tips for a Memorable Weekend:

  1. Camping Essentials: Pack camping gear, clothing layers, and essentials to ensure a comfortable stay.

  2. Adventure Attire: Dress in comfortable attire for hiking and outdoor play.

  3. Reservation Check: Confirm reservations for campgrounds, dining, and activities in advance.

  4. Weather Check: Keep an eye on the weather forecast to prepare accordingly.

  5. Leave No Trace: Respect the environment and practice responsible camping and outdoor etiquette.

From exploring natural wonders to enjoying interactive museums, indulging in delicious meals to camping under the stars, Scioto County offers a wealth of experiences that cater to families seeking both adventure and relaxation. This weekend guide invites you to embark on a journey that celebrates togetherness, nature, and the joy of creating lasting memories with your loved ones.

Activities for older kids:

  • River City SUP (stand up paddle boarding) + Yoga

  • Raven Rock State Nature Preserve hiking

  • Earl Thomas Conley Pump Track

  • Portsmouth Skate Park

  • Ben's Happy Trails Horseback Riding

  • Deadbolt Escape Room

  • Southern Ohio Axe Throwing


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